Across a Group of historically male-oriented businesses, operating in traditionally ‘white-male’ sectors, Sam has successfully embedded D&I into the company’s DNA, ensuring it remains top of the agenda and is driven by passionate people, at all levels, who embrace it and learn from it. She has been instrumental in establishing the Morson Group’s commitment to double the number of female engineering contractors by 2020. Sam has achieved significant success in helping to reduce unconscious bias in recruitment decisions, delivering on-site training together with blind auditioning and CV anonymisation. Male-oriented language has been eliminated and recruiters work more closely with candidates to ensure CVs fully reflect skills, suitability and attitudes. Sam has also been instrumental in introducing gender-balanced panels, increasing gender balanced representation and breaking down stereotypes. Externally, Sam helped to launch The Girls’ Network’s Salford division, where she is also a mentor and role model. Bridging the gap between education and business, Sam organised a group of Year 10 and 12 Girls’ Network mentees from St Ambrose Barlow RC High & 6th Form in Manchester to get a taste of what a career in rail and engineering can offer them. The #CareersOnTrack event aimed to address skills shortages and the lack of diversity in the industry by shining a spotlight on the exciting careers and pathways, whilst breaking down the stereotypes that prevent women from entering.
Anna established and leads the ‘ITs Her Future’ (IHF) Programme at KPMG, which tackles gender diversity in technology by transforming how KPMG attracts, recruits, promotes and retains women. 34% of the women on the IHF mentoring scheme have secured promotion since joining, and the attrition of women in tech consulting has dropped by 10%. The scheme has been adopted by KPMG Global firms, and recently the scheme has been taken to clients; driving a wider change and impact. Within KPMG, Anna mentors and sponsors several women and leads schemes serving a wide community of women. The mentoring programme she founded now supports 300 women in developing and enhancing their careers, including the opportunity to serve on Boards. She is also supporting the wider community through the Future Leaders Technology Programme for Girls targeting Years 5-10. The programme has seen great results such as 95% of the girls seeing themselves working in tech in the future in comparison to 30% at the beginning. She is developing a white paper focused on how children can best be equipped for the technology-centric workplaces of the future, and how we can make sure girls are fully engaged at every education stage. Anna is also passionate about community volunteering, and regularly dedicates time to mentoring children from challenging socio-economic backgrounds.
Three years ago, Ana became UK chairperson for Oracle Women’s Leadership (OWL) programme, an internal network for women to support the growth and development of current and emerging women leaders. OWL runs around eight events a year, with overwhelmingly positive feedback. Ana has increased OWL’s membership from 100 to 500 members due to a much improved communications programme. She has created a peer network for senior female leaders by establishing a program of women-only dinners for senior female executives from Oracle and their customers and partners. She has also improved the gender diversity of the consulting team by insisting on gender-equal candidate lists for the graduate assessment days resulting in more gender balanced intakes. Additionally, Ana expanded the Oracle Women Network program to include participation in the 30% Club cross-company Mentoring Scheme, and promoted Oracle’s corporate membership of Women on Boards to provide Oracle women with access to external opportunities. Externally, Ana is a founding trustee and company secretary for Smart Works Reading, a charity that supports women to return to employment, having helped over 400 women to date. She has also run a fundraising project to take professional headshots of men and women in exchange for a charitable donation, and is a member of the TechUK Skills and diversity council focused on diversity initiatives.
KR has been a fierce advocate and leader for connecting underrepresented groups with disabilities throughout the technology industry. At Amazon, her passion is to continue to drive inclusion and awareness for people of all backgrounds with disabilities to have a voice to create change. Prior to Amazon, KR advised Google on several projects that focused on tech innovation in accessibility. Her main project, Live Caption was announced at Google I/O 2019 by Google CEO, Sundar Pichai. KR is on several boards such as, the Consumer Technology Association Foundation, Deaf Kids Code, and the World Wide Hearing Foundation, and SXSW to drive disability inclusion in product design and culture. She has been awarded a U.S. Congressional award; Silicon Valley’s Top 40 Under 40 and 2017 Women of Influence; and 2015 Women on the Move by Women’s Business Journal for her advocacy and accessibility work in technology and policy.
Since May last year, Margaret has delivered a flagship Female Leadership Development Programme, focused on equipping women with the skills to take centre stage in their careers and progress to leadership. The programme has resulted in numerous promotions, expanded and more varied roles, and more involvement in senior leadership teams, boards, and networking groups. An alumni group has been formed to foster learnings and Margaret has mentored women leaders to deliver the programme going forward. In partnership with INSEAD, Margaret undertook a programme to drive gender balance, developing a business case, researching hidden challenges for women, conducting diagnostics and working with senior leadership teams to implement solutions. She is a founding partner and inaugural speaker for the Female Networking Group, and has led the rollout of Breaking Bias training for over 1,000 staff over 6 months. As part of this training rollout, Margaret initiated and managed a research project with Dublin City University to conduct rigorous academic assessment to measure programme outcomes. She also developed the company’s inaugural mentoring programme, exceeding gender balance targets. Externally, Margaret spreads the gender diversity message during speaking engagements at key events, sharing her experiences establishing various initiatives and programmes focused on gender diversity. She is beginning a journey with the Women ReBOOT programme, an innovative initiative that supports women with technology sector skills and experience to return to work after a career break.
Shruthi has established diversity and inclusion among the baseline values for Adapt Ready. Despite being a startup, she believes that establishing such values at the beginning will blend into the culture of the company. Last year, Shruthi’s team made a conscious decision to have women represent 50% not only on the board, but also among employees. The board goal has been met and the organisation is close to reaching the same ratio among employees. She believes that no matter how good the policies and governance are within companies, in order for them to effectively work, every organization has a responsibility to go further – and hence, at Adapt Ready, Shruthi also established a system of governance to constantly challenge biases towards gender, race, even functional roles among other diverse characteristics to influence change beyond the company. Despite being a startup, Adapt Ready is designing workforce policies to simplify the hiring and retaining of such talent, such as flexible hours and 50% remote work. In addition to championing these within the organisation, Shruthi took the initiative in sharing best practices with a community of startup founders and other organisations and communicating it to Adapt Ready’s advisors and board to create a ripple effect and close the gender gap. As a thought leader, Shruthi is frequently invited to speak on diversity & inclusion. She regularly mentors other women, particularly those thinking of starting their own business, and was recently named ‘Champion for Action’ by Grant Thornton International.
A Sales Leader within LinkedIn’s Talent Solutions business, Rebecca also leads Women@LinkedIn in London, an ERG aimed at engaging, inspiring and empowering women and allies in the workplace. She has hosted a series of events to celebrate both International Women’s Day and International Men’s Day to ensure LinkedIn are as inclusive as possible. She is also a member of GenderNetworks.com which brings together the heads of gender networks in the UK. She has mentored young women through LinkedIn’s mentoring programme, and often speaks at events on diversity in the workplace to drive positive change. Rebecca has been instrumental in hiring diverse talent into LinkedIn and advising companies on how they can attract and retain diverse talent within their own organisations. She actively creates and curates content on LinkedIn on all things related to diversity and inclusion.
Christina co-leads Women @ MHUSA, Moet Hennessy USA’s internal initiative and the most celebrated pillar of MHUSA’s Diversity & Inclusion strategy. The program is based on three pillars – personal and professional development, creating meaningful connections (both internally and externally) and giving back to the community. In 2018, Women @ MHUSA organised and hosted 350+ participants at over 30 events and programmes in New York and across the United States. They also launched a Women in Leadership Speaker Series and created monthly author and panel discussions and networking events with best-selling authors in conversation with a diverse group of panellists about poignant and relevant topics. They have elevated their partnership with Women of the Vine and Spirits, and continued to foster Dress for Success corporate partnership for eight professional women’s group events. Christina is an active member of the nationally recognised Dress for Success organisation, and has participated in annual clothing drive collections as well as served as mentor during their Professional Women’s Group meetings; sharing insights and learnings about her own career to benefit the women who are part of the Dress for Success network.
Justine is the head of Primary Markets Israel and a proud mum. She founded the Jewish Women’s Business Network, which is part of the London Stock Exchange Group’s Women’s Inspired Network (WIN), connecting over 250 women globally from the UK, Israel, Gibraltar, Europe, the USA and South Africa. The network has positively contributed to developing job prospects, mentoring opportunities, business connections, communities and philanthropic efforts for its members. She is also on the board of directors for Vibe Israel, who support professionals globally to understand and share Israel’s brand. She is part of the SAHI Youth Organisation, who work to support neglected youth, and is an Executive Board Member and mentor for parents with Autistic children. Additionally, Justine volunteers for the Forum of Jewish Leadership, supporting university students to be placed in corporates and tech companies for summer internship programmes in the UK and Israel.
Joanne is the D&I lead for the IBM UK & Ireland laboratories . She and her team run special gender diversity programmes supporting women’s career and skills advancement. She runs internal events involving mentorship programmes where women share experience and inspire others. Running “Women in Technology Interconnects” twice a year which bring together women from all over the UK and Ireland with themes covering ‘Press for Progress’ & “Be Equal”. Attendees hear from a range of inspiring IBM and external role models which provide participants with an insight into the technologies that are transforming businesses today, inclusion in society, and career hurdles and how to overcome them. Joanne also co-developed a course called ‘Developing Your Technical Career’, aimed at encouraging female employees on a technical career path through engaging role models and recognising that sometimes technical people face unique challenges. She runs internal lunch and learn sessions for the ConnectingWomen@IBM initiative, among many others. Externally, Joanne empowers young women to pursue careers in STEM through IBM’s educational outreach events and programmes. She also runs Women in Technology days for university women to highlight IBM’s work and its diversity credentials.